Success Stories

Here are some examples of how your donations are helping shelters and rescue groups, in the organizations’ own words.

Shelter From the Storm: Purina New Year, New Home
What was the money or product used for?

This grant money was used to provide reduced adoption fees.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

We were able to reduce the adoption fees for 19 dogs in our care to help them find homes quicker.

How many pets did this grant help?

19

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

When Pumpkin Spice (first photo) came to our rescue from one of the animal-control facilities we work with, she had a very large inguinal hernia. During surgery, we found her spleen to be entrapped in the hernia as well as her small bowel. During the first surgery, we had to remove her spleen and repair the hernia defect. Unfortunately, she had to have three more surgical procedures and lots of wound-management before everything was healed and she was able to go up for adoption. After many months of care, she was finally able to go up for adoption. She is an easy, fun-loving, sweet girl — unless there are cats around, and in that case, she likes to be naughty. Pumpkin Spice may be a little bit older, but she has plenty of spunk and is sure to bring a smile to your face. She has been adopted.

Happy Tails Rescue: Emergency Medical Grant
What was the money or product used for?

Double entropion surgery

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

Rocky came to us with blood literally dripping down his face. His only hope was entropion surgery. He got this lifesaving surgery!

How many pets did this grant help?

Rocky

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Rocky came to us with not only severe respiratory and eye infections, but with blood coming from his eyes (first photo) due to the need for double entropion surgery. Rocky has since been adopted and is loved and adored by his new family. Attached is his surgery picture (second photo), a recent photo (third photo) and note from his new mom.

Here Today Adopted Tomorrow Animal Sanctuary, Inc.: Purina New Year, New Home
What was the money or product used for?

The grant money was used to reduce adoption fees for spirit cats (shy/fearful cats) and chronically ill cats and help pay their medical bills before and after adoption (our Care for Life Program).

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

Since becoming open-admission in 2018, Here Today Adopted Tomorrow (HTAT) has been taking in more cats that are traditionally seen as hard to adopt. The Purina New Year, New Home grant has helped us remove the barrier of price from adoption. When combined with HTAT’s innovative adoption programming for special-needs cats, we have been able to find furever homes for cats whom we would have been unable to help before, including shy/fearful cats and chronically ill cats, making it possible for HTAT to remain open-admission and no-kill to more effectively serve our community.

How many pets did this grant help?

To date, nine cats have been adopted and seven are currently on the adoption floor because of funds from this grant.

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

George (first photo) is a tuxedo cat who came in when his owner passed away. He had just been diagnosed as a diabetic. He would sometimes get a bit cranky with the other cats, but once his blood sugar was under control, he became a new cat. He is 10 years old but plays like a kitten. He loves children, almost more than adults. Catherine and her fiancé walked in one day and fell in love with him. Catherine is a home health aide, so giving George his insulin shots was no big deal to her. The cost of his care, on the other hand, was daunting. Thanks to the Purina New Year, New Home grant, George is in our Care for Life program and HTAT is helping to pay for his medical care. Now George lives with Catherine and her family and has a little girl (Catherine’s daughter) to call his own.

Mr. Bigglesworth (second photo) came to HTAT at 5 years old as a timid cat after living his life outside. He had an upper-respiratory infection and a mouth infection and needed a dental. Chou Chou (third photo) was a shy kitten who wanted nothing more than to sit in a warm lap. Mr. Bigglesworth and Chou Chou are both tuxedo cats, so it was often assumed that they were related. However, they were just two stray cats from two different towns who happened to arrive at HTAT at about the same time. Both cats have feline leukemia (FeLV).

In most shelters, cats with FeLV don’t get a chance. They are simply euthanized, regardless of whether they are currently healthy or not. At Here Today, we believe that every cat deserves a chance, and we have a special room just for FeLV+ cats because FeLV is easily transmitted between cats. Thanks to the Purina New Year, New Home grant, we were able to get Mr. Bigglesworth and Chou Chou the medical care and testing they needed to be ready for adoption. The reduced adoption fee and the Care for Life program help nudge adopters who may be hesitant to adopt our FeLV+ cats.

Barbara and her daughter already had an FeLV+ cat named Clown at home and wanted some friends for her. They were excited to adopt BOTH Mr. Biggleswoth and Chou Chou. Both cats are doing well in their new home. Mr. Bigglesworth is enjoying more human interaction and Chou Chou is acting like a real kitten. See the picture of her cuddling with her new friend Clown (fourth photo).

Also included are photos of a few cats currently up for adoption thanks to the Purina New Year, New Home grant:

Chai (fifth photo): Diabetic, Care for Life Meet Chai here.

Addie (sixth photo): Tail-pull Injury, Care for Life Meet Addie here.

July (sixth photo): Spirit Cat Meet July here.

Clarissa (seventh photo): Spirit Cat Meet Clarissa here.

Franklin County Humane Society DBA Paws for Life NC: Purina New Year, New Home
What was the money or product used for?

The grant of $1,500 was used to reduce the adoption fees of cats aged 1 year and older from $95 to $40. It was also used to reduce the adoption fees of dogs who have been up for adoption for a long time (six months to more than a year) from $225 to $100.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

The grant was essential in marketing cats and dogs who had been with us a while. It provided a new way to highlight the pets on social media, as well as in their biographies on our website and on Petfinder. Although the reduction in fees was not the only reason people adopted, it was an added incentive to meet pets who had been overlooked. Several of the pets adopted through this grant had been with Paws for Life NC for over a year. The adoptions freed up space in foster homes, allowing us to help more pets. The grant was also a morale boost to our volunteers and generated excitement by helping more animals find homes. We are incredibly thankful for Purina and the Petfinder Foundation’s generous grant, which helped 19 pets find forever homes and helped 15 shelter animals move from an overcrowded county shelter into foster care.

How many pets did this grant help?

19

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Gunther is a sweet, petite, friendly dog with silly ears. In February 2018, he was pulled by Paws for Life NC from the Franklin County shelter. The Franklin County shelter is an open-intake shelter and Gunther’s time was nearly up. Luckily, we had someone to foster Gunther and he moved into a foster home. Sadly, he was found to be heartworm-positive. After spending some time getting healthy and putting on a little weight in foster care, he was neutered and treated for heartworm. In March 2018, he went up for adoption, and for over a year, Gunther was overlooked.

His foster mom took great pictures, wrote an excellent bio, and took him to community events and adoption events. She shared his photo and story on Facebook, but no one was interested. Gunther also has a wonderful personality — the spunky little guy, at just 50 lbs., likes to play but seems to have a good read on the dogs around him. If he’s with a playful pup, he will tumble and play; if he’s with an older, reserved dog, he will relax with them. He is eager to please, and loves affection and learning what it is to be a warm and cozy indoor doggie. We just had no idea why he was not finding a home.

Shortly after we reduced Gunther’s fee thanks to the grant, he received an application. The home trial was successful, and after 14 months and five days in foster care, he has found his forever! His dad says, “We can’t imagine life without him. He has done so well at our house! He has two kitty brothers, Russel (he’s 22) and Sam, and they all tolerate each other.” It was a tearful day for his foster mom, but she was so happy to see him happy.

Gunther’s foster mom says, “Thank you, Petfinder Foundation, for this wonderful grant! My foster pup Gunther (Gunny) is on home trial and the discounted adoption fee was one of the reasons they chose him — not because they can’t afford the fee, but they want to spoil him with extra toys and treats and a fancy new bed. The other reason was the video of Gunny and my cat playing sweetly together. The adopters have a 20-year-old kitty and they needed a dog who was very cat-friendly!”

Ventura County Animal Services: Dogs Playing for Life Mentorship Grant (Invitation Only)
What was the money or product used for?

The funding allowed me to attend the Dogs Playing for Life Mentorship II.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

At the mentorship, I learned new techniques that are helping our shelter dogs. I learned kennel routine and fancy footwork, which have been implemented. Our dogs are learning to not bolt through open doors and how to walk well on-leash. I also learned new techniques and gained more knowledge on running playgroups. I have attended both DPFL mentorships and have learned so much from both. DPFL is a great organization; thank you for the opportunity to learn from them again!

How many pets did this grant help?

Thousands, the kennel routine and fancy footwork are now integrated into our training for staff and volunteers.

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Chachia (first photo) was relinquished to the shelter as an owner-surrender. Chachia did not have any leash manners; she would come running out of the kennel and not many volunteers were able to walk her. She was enrolled in Mutt Manners, which is a volunteer group that works with dogs in pack walks. Chachia was pulling very hard on leash at the start of the pack walk, but after using fancy footwork, she started to learn that it is easier to look at the handler, not pull on-leash, and enjoy the walk. Chachia is still at the shelter and still participates in pack walks. She still needs work, but without fancy footwork, she would be limited in who could walk her and we would have been challenged to find a way to train her. Meet Chachia here.

Broward County Animal Care and Adoption Center: Dogs Playing for Life Mentorship Grant (Invitation Only)
What was the money or product used for?

Dog’s Playing for Life Mentorship II

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

Through this grant, our enrichment supervisor was able to tailor her skills in playgroups as well as learn new skills to help work with dogs with behavior concerns. She was able to pass along those skills to select volunteers, as well as the volunteer coordinator, so they could be utilized on the dogs and continue to be taught to new volunteers.

How many pets did this grant help?

500+

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Gaia was a long-term resident with us. Originally arriving in April of 2018 as a stray, she was adopted and returned twice because of concerns about her with other dogs. After the DPFL Mentorship II, our enrichment supervisor was able to integrate Gaia into playgroups more and teach her basic clicker training. She was eventually able to pair her with a foster who had other dogs in her home, and after a few weeks with her, she was officially adopted!

Prairie Paws Animal Shelter: Dogs Playing for Life Mentorship Grant (Invitation Only)
What was the money or product used for?

The Petfinder Foundation Dogs Playing for Life Mentorship Program Grant was used to cover tuition cost for Tim Yeaglin, our director of operations, to attend a Dogs Playing for Life mentorship session in Florida. With the tools he has learned, he is enhancing our shelter dogs’ quality of life by allowing them to engage in natural social behaviors.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

The training Tim received allows us to provide true freedom to our shelter dogs. By letting dogs interact with one another, their overall experience at a shelter can be changed from detrimental to positive. We estimate we can bring at least 800 dogs throughout this year physical and mental stimulation and at least that many each year after. The dogs burn off energy, learn social skills and are more relaxed when meeting potential adopters. As an extra bonus, the groups bring joy to the volunteers and staff members who are helping Tim run the playgroups. It’s a great way to fight off compassion fatigue. Joy is infectious. The advanced obedience training that Tim was taught has helped grow our volunteer programming by training the volunteers in more dog obedience training. The training allows the dogs with more advanced behavior issues to be addressed and be safely placed in loving homes.

How many pets did this grant help?

800

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Just recently we posted a short video of Paul (pictured) and Iron Man having a great time in playgroup. His adopter saw the video and came to visit Paul. This resulted in Paul getting adopted after seven months of awaiting his heroes. The video can be seen here (he’s the one with the stubby tail).

We originally adopted out Paul as puppy and, to our dismay, upon his return we discovered he was never properly socialized with humans or other dogs. Because we had few resources to concentrate primarily on him, the doggy playgroups he was a part of on a regular basis helped him learned how to be social appropriately to not only other dogs but to humans as well. Most importantly, Tim learned at his mentorship how to properly introduce Paul to strangers and to use the command “park it,” which allowed Paul to go out in public and be social. His story can be seen here (Tim Yeaglin, who was awarded the mentorship, is the human in the video).

Humane Society of Marlboro County: Dogs Playing for Life Mentorship Grant (Invitation Only)
What was the money or product used for?

The funds were used to send our kennel supervisor, Ashley Reed, to the Dogs Playing for Life Level II Mentorship Training in Florida at the National Canine Center. Ashley spent a week in Florida learning from the DPFL team!

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

Ashley returned from training armed with lots of tools and knowledge to help us at the Marlboro County Animal Shelter in not only basic kennel behavior and playgroups, but also protocols to help shut-down dogs (which we get a lot of from our community) and dog-reactive/barrier-reactive dogs. We now have a plan to move forward with these types of dogs which has decreased their length of stay and helped us make their days at the shelter more enriched and less stressful. Our general dog population is taught the kennel basics that Ashley learned, which helps us gain new rescue partners and move dogs out of the shelter more quickly.

How many pets did this grant help?

So far, this grant has been beneficial to 121 dogs!

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Spade (first three photos) has been at our shelter since December 2018. He was both barrier- and dog-reactive in his kennel. We had tried to put him in playgroups on two occasions with a muzzle, but he chose to ignite a fight with multiple dogs and respond negatively towards the play yard handler when corrected. We had lost hope for a positive outcome for Spade. When Ashley returned from her training with DPFL, she immediately went to work with Spade. In two days, Spade learned his kennel routine — it turned out he was very smart and bored! He sits on his Kuranda bed now and waits quietly while he is leashed and muzzled. Ashley was able to successfully incorporate him into daily playgroups! Spade has transformed from a reactive, overly energetic dog to an easygoing boy who loves rolling on the ground in playgroups with both males and females. In fact, as I type this, he is out in the play yard with 11 other dogs! He is ready for the next step of playgroups without his muzzle.

Bennett arrived to our shelter in December of 2018 as a semi-feral, shut-down dog. When Ashley returned from her training, she focused on teaching Bennett to walk on a leash and be incorporated into playgroups. His confidence blossomed in a week and we were able to find a rescue group for him in New York!

Champ was an overly excited, 10-month-old dog with two broken legs. We had been having to sedate him twice a day in order to let his legs heal, but he all he wanted to do was jump and play. In his frustration, he became mouthy and started grabbing arms and shirts. The first dog Ashley worked with the morning of her return was Champ. She corrected his jumping on-leash, used several techniques she learned in training and worked on both his manners and his frustrations. He learned quickly and was able to finish healing without sedation and move on to a wonderful rescue group quickly!

Azalea City Cat Coalition: Emergency Medical Grant
What was the money or product used for?

See below.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

We are a very small organization and so any medical emergency really affects us financially. This grant was so very helpful. It covered the medical needs of Knox completely.

How many pets did this grant help?

1

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Knox was a stray picked up with a broken leg — the bone was actually sticking out of his leg. He was taken in by ACCC for emergency care. His leg was removed by Dr. Wilder at Ark Animal Clinic and he is currently rehabbing in a foster home. He will be ready for adoption in about two more months. Although we thought he was very feral, he is actually a lovebug and will make a great three-legged pet for some lucky family!

UPDATE June 17, 2019: Knox has been adopted!

Montgomery County Animal Care and Control: Purina New Year, New Home
What was the money or product used for?

Nestle Purina’s New Year New Home grant was to provide reduced-fee and fee-waived adoptions to members of the community.

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

The Nestle Purina New Year New Home grant provided Montgomery County Animal Care and Control with the means to find 22 dogs and cats new homes through fee-reduced and fee-waived adoptions. Many in our community have wanted to adopt but, due to cost, sometimes responsible pet owners have been unable to adopt, and the Nestle Purina Grant opened those doors to members of our community. Being a large military community, we also provided alternatives to our military Gold Star families by providing fee-waived adoptions to those tremendously brave families. We also provided fee-waived adoptions to our combat-wounded warriors and reduced-fee adoptions to all active-duty military members. Many of these animals found forever homes thanks to the tremendous generosity of Nestle Purina and the Petfinder Foundation.

How many pets did this grant help?

22

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Our great story begins with Ginger. Ginger came to us as an unwanted puppy from her previous owner, who was just unable to care for Ginger any longer due to an unexpected move to a smaller apartment. Ginger required a great deal of exercise and attention, being a husky mix, and it was just unfair to allow her to be cramped in a small apartment all day long. Ginger struggled here at the shelter, as many pets do when they are separated from their owners. Ginger had begun to show signs of depression from not being able to run or have a great deal of human interaction as she was accustomed to. Enter the Larusch family. The family came to the shelter one day looking for an energetic younger dog who could be active with their 13-year-old daughter. They spent a great deal of time with Ginger and found an immediate connection. Their daughter loved to be outside playing and being active. They immediately fell in love and were excited to be able to take Ginger home. Ginger has spent the last few weeks running free in the family’s fenced-in yard, and going on long walks with the family and field trips to the park. We are so grateful that Ginger found her forever home.